To implement procedure and practice for installing Mobile Towers on the terrace or to display advertisement board / hoarding on the building of the Co-operative Housing / Premises Societies:
We are being cheated by telecom companies every day.
We have all seen TV ads by telecom companies with claims of super fast internet available on the highest mountains and farflung islands. But the truth is that we don’t get good internet even inside our homes in metro cities. They promise 21Mbps or even 100Mbps, but can barely deliver 2Mbps.
Our phone signals are horrible and data speeds are worse. India has really poor implementation of 3G Internet, with only a third of the towers being 3G enabled. But instead of fixing them, the telecom companies are busy hard selling us the 4G dream.
No matter which telecom company we subscribe to or whether our connection is 2G, 3G or 4G, the internet speed is extremely slow and the connection is very erratic.
Why don’t we get good internet speed?
- Speed: Only 30% of Indian cellular towers are 3G enabled. The rest provide 2G. Your data speed depends on which tower you’re connected to. It is highly probable that you are getting a 2G connection even when you have activated a 3G pack.
- Coverage: Telecoms haven’t invested in erecting enough cellular towers to cover all the consumers. Bad signal leads to low data speeds.
- Consistency: Telecoms cap data speeds in some areas because they can’t handle the load.
TRAI has fixed the minimum speed for 3G speed at 1Mbps and has asked telecoms to ensure that they don’t fall below this speed for at least 95% of the time. But the reality is that most 3G customers don’t get a stable 3G connection half of the time. According to a recent report by Ericsson, 48% mobile customers found no difference between 2G and 3G speeds. TRAI has also asked all telecoms to clearly communicate the minimum data speed they provide for 2G, 3G, and 4G in all ads and customer materials. This is also not being implemented.
TRAI has imposed penalties of Rs.1.5 lakh for delivering service below set standards. Do you think that amount will scare the telecom giants? Plus, the biggest irony is that TRAI makes its decisions based on Quality of Service reports compiled by the telecom operators themselves and not by an impartial, independent body.
Sign our petition and join us in asking TRAI and the Telecom Ministry to:
- Conduct independent Service audits of quality across India.
- Increase the penalty for non-compliance by telecom operators on minimum speed and service consistency
- Get telecoms to declare a roadmap on upgrading infrastructure to ensure good 3G and 4G network coverage and speed across the country.
- Rationalize the spectrum prices so that telecoms have sufficient resources at hand and are left with no excuse to upgrade the infrastructure
The average internet speed in India stood at 2.7Mbps whereas it was 26.8Mbps in the UK, 14Mbps in Spain and 11Mbps in Turkey. Even Indonesia had a higher average speed at 4.4 Mbps. India is one of the slowest mobile connected countries in the Asia Pacific. How can we compete with rest of the world if our internet slows us down?
Sign the petition asking TRAI and the Telecom Ministry for proper regulations to guarantee consistent internet speeds and services on mobile devices that the customers are paying for. It is time telecoms are held accountable for the tall claims they make in their advertisements.
- Minister of Telecom
Ravi Shankar Prasad
- Chairman, TRAI
Ram Sewak Sharma
Click Here to sign the petition
The Bombay High Court on Monday directed the state government and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) not to grant any further permission for installation of mobile towers in playgrounds, recreation grounds, parks and gardens.
The HC was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by several petitioners, including NGO Nagar (NGO Alliance of Government and Renewal) and charitable organisations Agni Trust and Organisation for Verdant Ambience and Land Trust, which challenged the notification issued by the state government on March 4, 2014, permitting installation of mobile towers in public open spaces like playgrounds, recreation grounds, parks and gardens.
“If you want to bring about such modification, you have to issue a public notice as this has far reaching ramifications. Fortunately nothing has been done so far. If one company has sought setting up of 1,400 towers, other might also make similar requests,” argued Chinoy.
The PIL states that no objections/suggestions from the public were called for before issuance of the notification and seeks for the notification to be quashed and set aside.
“The notification prohibits installation of mobile towers in the premises of schools and colleges as well as adjoining buildings within three meters from the boundary walls of schools and colleges on the ground that it will have deleterious effect on youth and students. It, however, arbitrarily permits the installation of mobile towers in recreation grounds, playgrounds, parks and gardens, which are primarily frequented by children, and youth for playing, exercise and leisure,” stated the PIL.
The petition further stated that the notification will lead to depletion of Mumbai’s already overburdened open spaces. “The availability of open spaces in Mumbai are abysmally below the national average and any further encroachment on these spaces is detrimental to the public interest,” it further stated.
On October 3, 2013, the state government published a notification inviting objections and suggestions to a proposed draft notification on installation of mobile towers issued under MRTP Act but had excluded land under any reservation in the concerned DP. The installation of telecom towers on reservations (including non-buildable reservations like playgrounds, recreation grounds etc) was first proposed by a mobile telecom company, stated the PIL. The state government then issued the notification on March 4, 2014 which allowed installation of towers in open spaces.
The court asked Chinoy if the mobile towers seeking permission were 4G towers and was told “they must be”.
In summary, the International EMF Scientist Appeal calls upon the United Nations, the WHO, and the UN Member States to:
- address the emerging public health crisis related to cell phones, wireless devices, wireless utility meters and wireless infrastructure in neighborhoods; and
- urge that the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) initiate an assessment of alternatives to current exposure standards and practices that could substantially lower human exposures to non-ionizing radiation.
UNEP is the UN’s “voice for the environment” and is uniquely positioned to take a planetary view of the potential for harm that EMF pollution presents to biology — the evolution, health, well being and very survival of all living organisms world-wide. EMF scientists are giving warnings about clear signs of adverse biological and health problems that are affecting people and nature. Now is the time to ask serious questions about this emerging environmental health crisis.
The Rs 19,000 crore mystery: How the CAG figure for “undue benefit” to Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio shrank
In a report that was tabled in Parliament on 8 May 2015, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India indicted the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) for providing an “undue benefit” to Reliance Jio—a telecom company owned by Mukesh Ambani as part of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL)—by allowing Jio to offer voice services under the Broadband Wireless Access (BWA) spectrum. According to the report, the cost of this “undue benefit” was Rs 3,367 crore. However in a draft report that had been released by the CAG in August 2014, the figure for the undue benefit was Rs 22,842 crore.
In its draft report, the CAG was highly critical of the government for allowing Reliance Jio to use Infotel Broadband Services Private Limited (IBSPL) as a front company to acquire broadband spectrum. IBSPL was, at that time, a tiny internet service provider promoted by Anant Nahata—the son of Mahendra Nahata, who is the promotor of Himachal Futuristic Comunications Limited (HFCL), a manufacturer of telecom products and a provider of telecommunication services. Interestingly, HFCL came into the limelight in 2011, when it was alleged that Datacom, a company owned jointly by Videocon and HFCL, had been one of the prime beneficiaries in the allotment of 2G spectrum during the reign of A Raja as the telecom minister. Earlier, in 1995, Mahendra Nahata had bid for nine 2G licences and had to be “bailed out” by the then Communications Minister Sukh Ram. The CAG draft report had further claimed that Reliance Jio had acquired the spectrum exploiting loopholes left by the DoT while framing rules for the auction of 4G broadband wireless access (BWA) spectrum. The company then allegedly wangled permission to provide mobile telephone services on this spectrum.
The final report of the CAG that was presented on 8 May, however, has diluted this criticism considerably. It has deleted important references in the draft report to the alleged “rigging” of the auction by two “colluding” parties: Reliance and Infotel.